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Washington, DC - This year's Federal Flexible Spending Account Program (FSAFEDS) Open Season has again proven its importance to federal employees, with statistics released by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) showing 227,000 current federal employees electing to open a flexible spending account to help pay their out-of-pocket medical bills or the costs of dependent care. The figure represents a 26 percent increase over the number of FSA account holders as of the end of last year's Open Season.
"I am very pleased with the overall success of this year's FSAFEDS Open Season," said OPM Director Linda M. Springer. "I am particularly pleased with the number of federal employees who are taking charge of their health care costs by investing in a FSA."
The Program lets federal employees contribute pre-tax income up to $5,000 each year to a health care FSA to pay for qualified medical expenses not covered by the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, or other insurance, including dental care, eyeware, prescription drug co-payments and over-the-counter medicines. Employees also may fund a separate FSA account up to $5,000 annually to cover the cost of child care or to pay for the care of qualifying dependents. A relative newcomer to the Program, the Limited Expense Health Care Flexible Spending Account (LEX HCFSA) allows employees enrolled in a high deductible health plan with a health savings account to pay for qualified dental and vision expenses using pre-tax income.
"Health care costs are a concern to many Americans, but with an FSA, an individual can better control how and where their hard earned dollars are spent," said Springer. "And the continued increase in participation in FSAFEDS speaks for itself."
Before the beginning of each new calendar year, employees wishing to participate in FSAFEDS must commit a specific dollar figure -- subject to a $250 minimum per account and $5,000 maximum -- to a health-care and/or dependent-care account.
Our mission is to Recruit, Retain and Honor a World-Class Workforce to Serve the American People. OPM supports U.S. agencies with personnel services and policy leadership including staffing tools, guidance on labor-management relations and programs to improve work force performance.